Wisconsin Child Support laws

Wisconsin Child Support Laws
Half of all single, separated and divorced parents, both mothers and fathers, receive little or no financial help from their child’s other parents. The Wisconsin child support program was established as a requirement of Title IV-D of the Social Security Act of 1975. It is a cooperative effort of local, state, and federal agencies designed to ensure that both parents are responsible for the support of their children. The program helps families through a number of services such as establishing paternity, locating parents, and obtaining and enforcing child support orders set by the courts. In 2002, the Wisconsin Child Support Program provided services for 339,882 cases.

In Wisconsin, the Bureau of Child Support (BCS), in the Department of Workforce Development is the agency responsible for managing the statewide child support program. BCS works with other states and the federal child support office, as well as county and tribal child support agencies.

Families who participate in public assistance programs such as Wisconsin Works (W-2), Food Stamps, Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) or Medicaid are automatically eligible to receive free child support services. In fact, parents who participate in these programs will be required to cooperate with their local child support agency unless they can demonstrate “good cause” for not participating. Families that are not enrolled in a public assistance program can also apply to their county or tribal child support agency for services, but they may be charged a one time fee of twenty dollars to apply.

Wisconsin Child Support Laws and Services
In Wisconsin, most child support services are provided at the local level by county and tribal child support agencies. The services provided by the Wisconsin Bureau of Child Support are locating non-custodial parents, establishing paternity, establishing and enforcing child support orders, processing child support payments, modifying child support orders and establishing medical support.

Enforcing Wisconsin Child Support laws
Once a child support order has been issued by the court system, your local child support agency can assist you in enforcing this court order. In Wisconsin, most child support orders include a provision for income withholding. Using income withholding, a notice will be sent to the non-custodial parent’s employer to garnish the parent’s income by a specified amount to pay for child support. The withheld funds are then sent to the Wisconsin Support Collections Trust Fund.

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